I'LL READ IT LATER

Posted in Quick Hits on October 21st, 2013 by Ed

The late, anything but great Jesse Helms was one of the nation's foremost crusaders against pornography, which he called "poe-nah-gra-fuh". This prompted Bill Hicks to make the accurate observation, "I don't think you should be against something until you can pronounce it."

An enterprising Slate writer tracked down six guests who recently appeared on Sean Hannity's Fox News program to explain how Obamacare was causing them grievous harm. Showing that no lessons have been learned since 2008, when the McCain campaign decided to make a mascot out of an unemployed, unlicensed plumber who couldn't tell the same story twice, it appears that Hannity thought it best to choose a group of people who were either flat-out lying or just completely ignorant of the new law and its requirements. My favorites:

First I spoke with Paul Cox of Leicester, N.C. He and his wife Michelle had lamented to Hannity that because of Obamacare, they can't grow their construction business and they have kept their employees below a certain number of hours, so that they are part-timers. Obamacare has no effect on businesses with 49 employees or less. But in our brief conversation on the phone, Paul revealed that he has only four employees. Why the cutback on his workforce? "Well," he said, "I haven't been forced to do so, it's just that I've chosen to do so. I have to deal with increased costs." What costs? And how, I asked him, is any of it due to Obamacare? There was a long pause, after which he said he'd call me back. He never did.

For someone with four employees (JOB CREATOR! HURR!) the sole requirement is that the employer inform them of the government website for exchanges. That could be done in an email in 10 seconds. And then there's:

When I spoke to Robbie, he said he and Tina have been paying a little over $800 a month for their plan, about $10,000 a year. And the ACA-compliant policy that will cost 50-75 percent more? They said this information was related to them by their insurance agent. Had they shopped on the exchange yet, I asked? No, Tina said, nor would they. They oppose Obamacare and want nothing to do with it. Fair enough, but they should know that I found a plan for them for, at most, $3,700 a year, 63 percent less than their current bill.

It's not amazing that people are horribly misinformed about the law given how easy it is to be horribly misinformed – more accurately, how it is impossible not to – when living inside the Beck – Fox News – Limbaugh conservative media bubble. It is amazing that there are people who refuse to even look at the website. To refuse to buy On Principle is silly, in my opinion, but one's choice. To form those principles based on fourth-hand information that was incorrect when it was first-hand is a symptom of two things. First, it shows how willingly the Teabagging rubes allow themselves to be screwed by their masters. Second, it emphasizes that for all their talk of freedom and demands to know The Truth, what these people really appear to want is to be force-fed information by their chosen mouthpieces like geese being fattened up for foie gras.